March 7, 2011
The townhouse of the 18th century diplomat and power behind the throne, Talleyrand, now houses the offices of the American consulate in its elegantly restored rooms. It was here on 13 January, 2011 that representatives of the major SAR units in Europe met, under the chairmanship of Jacques de Trentinian. Spain Society SAR , in the person of Nicholas Hayes, treasurer, took part in the afternoon meeting which included, besides Spain, representatives of the Belgian, French, Swiss and UK SAR organizations.
After introductions, we each described our unit – its history, growth and recruitment methods, and programs. This proved a valuable experience for all, with ideas for programs and new member recruitment especially worthwhile.
Following the business program we adjourned to the adjacent Naval Ministry building, facing out on to the Place de Concorde, for SAR France’s evening program. This consisted of an excellent presentation on the history of cross-channel invasion attempts (all but two, Julius Caesar and William the Conqueror, being unsuccessful), followed by a tour of the building which has been recently renovated and restored. Our sense of history satisfied, we refreshed ourselves with champagne and canapés in the magnificently decorated grand salon.
This joint planning meeting having proven successful, another is planned for April in London, to coincide with an UK SAR event.